MOSCOW, August 12 (R-Sport) – Zenit St. Petersburg is also in a period of reform after the surprise belt-tightening at fellow Russian football club Anzhi Makhachkala, midfielder Andrei Arshavin said Monday.
Dagestan-based Anzhi shocked the football world this month with an announcement that it was dramatically slashing its budget and would stop signing big foreign stars such as Samuel Eto'o in order to focus on rearing local talent.
"Now after the situation with Anzhi, the word 'reformatting' has become fashionable," Arshavin said to a Russian government website that provides information on the Sochi 2014 Olympics.
"Team reform is under way at Zenit too," the former Arsenal star added, having made just two league appearances from the substitutes bench in four games this season. "I hope this process will soon come to a quiet end."
The 31-year old was referring to his own readmission to the side after leaving London in the summer, and also the return of his midfield partner Anatoliy Tymoshchuk from Bayern Munich. Zenit, dethroned as Russian Premier League champions by CSKA Moscow last term, are off to a mediocre start to the season.
Zenit coach Luciano Spalletti's men stand fifth in the league with seven points from four games. Their next game is against Anzhi at the Petrovsky Stadium in St. Petersburg on August 18.